It’s not every day I get to travel halfway around the World with four... count them FOUR New York Times bestselling novelists. In fact, isn’t there some sort of dictum against putting that many of those all on one aeroplane all at the same time? And if there isn’t, why isn’t there?
And if that wasn’t enough to get my heart pounding, those four lovely NYT bestselling novelists are to be supplemented by four more writers... let’s count them too... that’s right, FOUR more New York Times bestselling novelists in the making.
That’s eight writers of Science Fiction and Fantasy all in one place.
Then there’s me. I’ll be the girl writer of this merry band.
The Black Library does employ women writers. In fact, it is very happy to have women onboard... the more the merrier. I’m going for fun on this trip, though. I’m going because I haven’t been to Canada before. I’m going because when I booked the ticket I didn’t have much to do in October (although that has since changed and I’ll be packing my laptop). I’m going because Gemma at Chestermere Library said she’d love to meet me, and I’d love to meet her too.
I’m going because the Chestermere Expo is going to be the biggest Black Library event outside the UK this year... Did I say this year? I think I meant EVER!
I’ve done a lot of Games Days over the years, and they’re pretty amazing, but it’s the Black Library events that I really love.
These relatively small-scale events are so much more intimate, dare I say it, more civilised than the great sprawling sea of bodies and cacophony of voices that tend to overwhelm the bigger events. It’s lovely to have the time to meet people face to face, with time to talk and the luxury of being able to hear questions and answers, and hold real conversations.
These events tend to be when I see the writers at their best, most relaxed and most animated. These are the times when the real connections are made and when the most valuable networking is done.
It’s worth remembering that writers pass their lives alone with their keyboards and their imaginations in little rooms, and one of their rewards for all the hours they spend closeted is to meet the readers and share their enthusiasm for what they do. This is as much a treat for them as it is for you.
I hope to see a great turn out for the Canada Expo. I’ll be there and so will eight writers, who also happen to be eight of the nicest blokes I know. I think you’re going to like them too.